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Pagina principale arrow newsitems arrow Strasbourg Region Prefect Marx to EF on European University: Wait FrancoGerman Summit+TransBorder c.

Strasbourg Region Prefect Marx to EF on European University: Wait FrancoGerman Summit+TransBorder c.

Scritto da ACM
Friday, 02 February 2018
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*Strasbourg/Pefectoral Palace/Angelo Marcopolo/- Replying to an "Eurofora"s Question, during his Press Conference for the New Year 2018, the Prefect of Strasbourg's "Great East" new big Region, Jean-Claude Marx, pointed, concerning a recent query for the eventual Creation of a European University here, at relevant Decisions that might, perhaps, be taken during a forthcoming Franco-German Summit, focused on TransBorder Cooperation and Integration at EU's core, which is expected during the 1st Semester of 2018.

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The creation of a European University was strongly Supported recently by the New President of Strasbourg's University, Professor Michel Deneken, while speaking with Journalists, including "Eurofora", at an Annual Event organized Previously this Week, in the Historic University Palace by the City's Press Club.


strasbourg_universitys_president_michel_deneken__agg_press_club_annual_2018_event_university_palace_eurofora_400


+ In addition, Strasbourg University's President told "Eurofora" that he was Interested to a Parallel Project, recently presented by the New CoE Assembly's President Michele Nicholetti, to establish PanEuropean Inter-University Networks for Studies and Research on COE's Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law-related Conventions (including BioEthics, etc : Comp. relevant statement by PACE President Nicoletti to "Eurofora" at ..), and looked forward to Meeting with him asap.

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minister_vidal_visits_deneken_dna

 (Minister Vidal + University President Deneken - DNA)


Deneken had just met, Earlier that Same Day (Monday Morning/Noon), with the New French Minister for Education, Universities and Scientific Research, Mrs Frederique Vidal, who discussed, during her visit, mainly Issues related to "Innovation Campus" and "Excellence" projects, funded by the National Government.

 education_minister_fvidal_in_strasbourg_ab_photo_400
(Minister Vidal at UniStra - AB's Photo)
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In Recent Years, (since 2016), German, French and Swiss Universities of the "Superior Rhine" river TransBorder "Euro-Region", have Established Together a Pioneer "European Campus", which, as its President, Professor Hans-Jochen Schiewer, Dean of nearby Freiburg University (Germany), replied to an "Eurofora"s Question mainly by stressing that this was a 1st Step, "Test" and Example towards concrete Integration at EU's Core.


But the then President of Strasbourg's University in France, Alain Beretz, (currently Director of Innovation/Research at the Education Ministry), had made it clear to "Eurofora" that the move concerned, at least for the Time being, much more the creation of "Links between Infrastructures" for Higher Education and/or Research between the adjacent Border Regions of the 3 Countries, including the possibility to get National or EU Funds for Joint Research Projects, etc.


(Comp. also EU Commissioner for Science, Research and Innovation, Carlos Moedas' Statements to "Eurofora", at that occasion : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/eusciencecomissioneronchinaandeuuniversitiesgroup.html + ...).


However, already, World-Famous Sismology Professor Michel Granet, former Vice-President for Research at Strasbourg's University and Director of the Institute on Earth's Physics, had agreed with "Eurofora", in the Context of a Press Conference on his Report for the Scientific Research Policy in Strasbourg's Region Alsace, prepared at the request of the French National Government, as Early as since the End of 2012, that a Logical and desirable Horizon for the foreseable Future would be, indeed, the progressive Creation of a Franco-Germano-Swiss University, due to evolve also at a Wider EU scope. And he observed that, among others, it's also Strasbourg's Region which appeared interested in such a possibility, (particularly on "lato sensu" Earth/Environment Science/Technologies, including Law/Politics/Economy, Philosophy/Religion, etc, according to an original Definition, used since 2005 by the European Foundation of Science, HeadQuartered in Strasbourg).


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=> - Thus, during Today's Press Conference's Question Time, "Eurofora" asked Prefect Jean-Claude Marx, what he thought about such various, but converging, Thoughts to Advance, from a "Euro-Campus", towards the eventual Creation of a "European University" in Strasbourg, naturally Based mainly on Franco-German Cooperation, in the foreseable Future.

 

And, by the way, What were the current Prospects for the Further Development of the Recently Established "Euro-Campus", initially between French-German-Swiss Regions of the "Superior Rhine", (which, naturally, might usefully serve as an important 1st Step towards the above-mentioned, Deeper and Wider Idea : Comp. Supra).

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 - Prefect Marx, in his Reply to this prospective Question by "Eurofora", significantly, did Not Deny such an eventual possibility in he foreseable Future, at least not a priori.


 - "Your Question is obviously Related mainly with the Cooperation between Neighbouring Countries, and particularly with the TransBorder Cooperation among adjacent Regions, observed in substance the Prefect of Strasbourg's New and much Bigger than in the Past, "Great East" Region : I.e. "the Only Area in Europe to have a Quadrilateral Border", (Nowadays, Both with Germany and Switzerland, as well as with Luxembourg and Belgium, thus Bringing Together 5 core European Countries, including France), as stresses an official Press File, (to which pointed Marx at this occasion).


 + Adding that this Fact gives to Strasbourg's new Region "a Vocation to become a Laboratory for European Territorial Cooperation, But Alsoo a Model of Regional Integration", (i.e. with Deeper Links).


-  Among the essentual issues on which such a TransBorder Cooperation can evolve, "is, indeed, included the Higher Education", (i.e. Universities), Prefect Marx, carefully but positively observed in Reply to "Eurofora"s above-mentioned Question.


 - He also revealed that, during the recent 3 Visits of new French President Macron in Strasbourg's Region, where he had several Contacts, including, particularly, by meeting the New German President Steinmeier, near Basel, in the framework of an Event for the Commemoration of the 100th Anniversary since the 1st World War, with the Symbolic and Practical Creation of a Joint, Franco-German History Museum, for the 1st Time, (See: ..., + Comp.: ..., etc), issues related to Higher Education were discussed.


 - "Such a Trans-Border Cooperation on Universities can take Various Forms", including, f.ex., particularly "in the Development of Language-learning", in German and French, for which, there is a Strong and Widely-shared Wish to Boost it further, he added, in Practical terms.


 - However, naturally, "there are also Many other interesting Areas", for Higher Education Cooperation/Integration, Prefect Marx observed.


 - In this regard, "I refer you to the Franco-German Summit, which has been just anounced for the 1st Semester of 2018", he told "Eufofora" on the above-mentioned issue.


- Because, it seems "Due to be Largely Focused on TransBorder Cooperation", he revealed.


 - As things stand Today, "I think that this is the Best Way to Address Your Question", (even if it doesn't yet give a direct, full and explicit reply, for the Time being), Prefect Marx added in fine, diplomatically, but with openess...


 - Especially when it concerns certain very "Advanced Issues", as that which you raised, for which it's obviously necessary to have the Time to Examine and Discuss seriously, before giving a more concrete and profound Reply, which might not yet be feasible to give immediately Nowadays, he concluded, as far as "Eurofora"s above-mentioned Question is concerned, i.e. (once again) leaving the Future Open.


 In the Press File handed Today to Journalists, including "Eurofora", is also reminded the Fact that, the Pre-Existing situation on TransBorder Cooperation for Strasbourg's New and much Larger "Great East" Region, extends in "2 Areas" : One around the "Big Region", bringing Together France, Luxembourg, Germany and Belgium, (chaired on 2018 by Luxembourg), and anOther around the "Superior Rhine (OberRhein)", which brings Together, France, Germany and Switzerland, (currently Chaired by Germany for 2018).


+ Meanwhile, Prefect Jean-Claude Marx also Ensured that, currently, the still on-going work to Prepare the New, 3 Years-Long : "2018-2020", Agreement between the French State and Strasbourg's Euro-Metropole, as Headquarters for European/PanEuropean Institutions, is "well Advanced" and due to be Concluded "during 2018's First Quarter", (i.e. until the End of March).  


Already in the Previous one, concerning the Period of 2015-2017, which has just Concluded, the "Development of "Euro-Campus" at University level, was clearly included, (Together with the traditional and wider "Strengthening of Strasbourg Region's "European Cultural Appeal").

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    Scientific innovation joined to Faith for Human Rights, Eastern Partnership and fight against the Crisis, but above all, the need to overcome the "Crisis of Trust" from EU Citizens, are the main priorities for new EU Parliament's President, Polish Jerzy Buzek, that a 555-votes-strong majority of MEPs on July 14,  Strasbourg made a living symbol of the fact that, 20 years after the fall of Berlin Wall (1989 - 2009) there is no more an Eastern or Western Europe, but only one Europe, as the head of the largest group of MEPs, ChristianDemocrats/EPP, Joseph Daul, stressed after the event.

    Speaking later to a group of Strasbourg's Journalists, including "EuroFora", the new EU Parliament's President clarified his stance on concrete topical issues, as f.ex. that of Turkey's controversial EU bid, which was one of the main issues of the June 2009 Electoral campain, clearly won by his party of ChristianDemocrats/EPP :  - "At present, Turkey does not fullfil none of EU conditions", he stressed, (See infra).

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    Buzek is well known in Strasbourg and to "EuroFora" as EU Rapporteur for the Framework Program of Scientific Research and Development of Technologies. A Natural Science Professor from the Historic and Religious landmark Polish City of Częstochowa, active in the famous Solidarnosk grass-roots social movement, he served 4 years as Prime Minister (1997-2001), before being elected as MEP in 2004 and 2009, after he brillantly won the latest EU Election at the head of his party (EPP) almost doubling the number of its MEPs from 15 to 28 !

    - "Innovation" and "Energy safety", as well as fight against the "Cimat change", but also "Eastern Partnership", the "Mediterranean", "Strategic partnerships" with Russia, the USA, etc, and the search for "solutions to the Economic Crisis" that EU Citizens "expect" from us, will be his "priorities", announced from the outset the new EU Parliament's President, reminding also that the quest for "Human and Civic Rights" played an important role in his experience with the Solidarnosc grass-roots social movement in Poland's History

    But, the most important of all, is the urgent need to overcome the "Crisis of Trust" between EU Institutions and the People he stressed : - EU "Citizens often don't understand us", denounced Buzek, launcing a call to "do anything for EU Citizens to understand our work" in EU Parliament : "We (MEPs) need to make EU Citizens involved" in "what we are doing every week, in Strasbourg and Brussels", he proposed. Pointing f.ex. to the hot "Debates" with "strong arguments" exchanged between MEPs during the preparation of their Legislative Decisions, in Committees, delivering often hard struggles between initially opposed points of view, long before forging a majority at the final vote, sometimes more than a year..

    Therefore, EU Parliament will be "open to your criticism, for discussion and exchange of views", he promissed to Journalists in Strasbourg.

    In this way, Buzek, in fact, highlighted "EuroFora"s main idea, that we strongly advocate since 1997-2007, to systematicaly and actively involve EU Citizens in public debates during the decision-making process of important EU measures, which affect their lives and the society in which they live, (and not only just a few weeks each 4 or 5 Years at the eve of EU Elections)...
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    This is related also to the symbolic gift that Buzek chose to give to the out-going former EU Parliament's President, Hans Gert Poettering, (2007-2009), his collegue in the ChristianDemocrats/EPP, who brillantly won 2009 EU Elections in Germany : A genuine statute of sainte Barbara crafted in Silesia's black Coal by Polish Miners : Those simple but strong people who fought for social change against some technocrats and bureaucrats disguissed into so-called "real-socialists" of old times. (PHOTO).

    It's enough to have seen a popular open air mass, at Warsaw's center, with many thousands of people, old and young, simple workers and intellectuals mixed together, with references to Poland's history and struggles for survival and liberty, through various ages, (as fex. that organized at the eve of CoE's 2005 panEuropean Heads of State and Government for the beatification of late Pope John-Paul II), in order to understand what such symbols mean..

buzek_press_a_400

    But, overcoming the "Crisis of Trust" with EU Citizens obviously implies also to rectify any errors done in the past, fex. on Turkey's controversial EU bid, with controversial decisions taken in 1999 and 2004 to give a "candidate" status and to start EU negotiations, provoking an unprecedented series of 3 "No" to EuroReferenda and 3 Majoriy Abstentions in EU Parliament Elections : 1999, 2005 and 2009, (even if the latest one succeeded to decelerate and almost stop the drop of participation rates, opening hopes for vote's revival after an electoral campaign clearly critical to Turkey's claims in several mainstream EU countries)
    
    Therefore, Buzek was faced with manifold critical Questions on EU Enlargement, most of them citting concrete examples of certain political problems  :  But his replies were almost always given as a matter of general principle :

    F.ex. Questioned on the suspension of EU - Croatia talks because of a Border conflict with EU Member Slovenia, Buzek prefered to speak about principles :

- "We know that during Enlargement, the process can be blocked by failure to resolve this kind of issues",  This concerns also other enlargments' cases", and "these rules are always in force" he warned.


But Buzek avoided to directly reply to a queston on "French and German EPP' calls to define the Borders of Europe", as a German journalist asked him by making a reference to French President Nicolas Sarkozy, and German Chancellor Angie Merkel's, critical statements on Turkey at the June 2009 Electoral campain.    

- "Concerning Enlargement, there's always the same rules : There have to be Criteria, which have to be respected if a Country wants to join the EU", he started to simply reply.

- "For my country (Poland) it took us 15 Years to fullfil these Criteria", Buzek reminded, indicating, if proportions are kept, that Turkey, fex. would have to spend some 25 years before eventually joining the EU..

- "Countries wishing to join the EU need to Change their Systems", as we (Poland and other former Eastern European Countries) did, he stressed.

- "'For me, meeting the condition of Human Rights is one of the Key conditions for membership in the EU", preferring again to speak from the point of view of General Principles, on the occasion of an untimely question on Serbia (which is not even a candidate yet)...

- "Turkey" has, "first of all", to fullfil (EU) Copenhagen criteria". Bevause, currently, none of them is fullfiled by Turkey", New EU Parliament's President, denounced, speaking later to a group of Journalists, including "EuroFora".

buzek_close_a_400 

In particular, on Human Rights :  - "We (EU) can never forget Human Rights", because "this is at the very Foundations of the EU", Buzek added.

On the contrary, when he referred to EU Enlargment for the  "Western Balkans Countries ", Buzek appeared upbeat, finding "promising situations", despite "difficulties" in the Past, since "Countries are queuing to become EU members", and this "generated changes", as he said.

As for Russia, Buzek observed that it was a "very important" country, located "in the same Continent", Europe,  "close to our borders", and "we need eachother". "But Russia' has 'differend poblems : "They claim that their system is Democratic, but rules are differend", and we must be "aware of such differencies", fex. "on Human Rights", that we can't ignore, as he said;

Concerning China, where a journalist observed that the recipient of EU Parliament's latest "Sakharov prize" for freedom of thought is "still in prison", Buzek found that since the 1999 events in Tien Amin square, "we see differencies on Human Rights still today", and expressed his "support" for those who try to ameliorate the situation.

On the contrary, speaking recently to "EuroFora" he strongly supported the idea for an EU - Ukraine cooperation, fex. between Airbus and Antonov, in order to build a  less costly but more performant than the old and problematic A400M, new Military Transport Airplane : - "They (Ukranian Antonov Company) can certainly do it. I'm sure they can. It's a good Idea, and I'd be glad if it was done", he told us. (See : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/airbusantonov.html )


(../..)

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